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Sea Isle police will step up their enforcement of distracted driving laws as part of the "Put the Brakes on Fatalities Day" initiative.

Sea Isle City’s police department will join a nationwide initiative on Wednesday that is designed to increase awareness about safe driving and attempt to keep the roadways fatality-free for one day.

To support the program, Sea Isle police will increase their distracted driving and vehicle safety enforcement for a 24-hour period.

Known as “Put the Brakes on Fatalities Day,” the national initiative encourages motorists to obey all traffic laws, including buckling up for every ride, follow the posted speed limit, avoid distractions while driving and always be safe and sober behind the wheel.

The goal is to unite the country in achieving one full day of zero traffic deaths by promoting safer behavior for motor vehicles, bicyclists and pedestrians.

Last year in New Jersey, 603 people lost their lives in motor vehicle-related crashes, up from 562 in 2015.

Distracted driving fatalities have increased at an alarming rate over the last 4 years. In 2013 there were 58 fatalities on the state’s roadways in which distracted driving was a major contributing factor. That number ballooned to 115 fatalities in 2016, or 19 percent of all traffic deaths.

To help battle this growing problem, the State’s “#77” alert system is now used to report all forms of dangerous driving.

In addition to county and municipal efforts, statewide law enforcement agencies will be utilizing their variable message boards and conducting educational activities to raise public awareness of this issue.

Additional information on the “Put the Brakes on Fatalities Day” is available by logging on to www.asce.org/brakesonfatalities. To contact the Sea Isle City Police Department, call 609-263-4431 or follow the SICPD on Facebook.